Spring 2023 Legal Externship – Northeast Regional Office

Northeast Regional Remote, United States


Earthjustice’s Northeast Regional Office is accepting applications for part- or full-time legal externs for spring 2023. One or two candidates will focus generally on the work of the Northeast Regional Office and another will focus mostly on issues related to safe drinking water. We are seeking current 2Ls and 3Ls who share a passion for justice and a healthy environment, and who are eligible to receive academic credit or fulfill a graduation requirement through this externship. This is a remote role, but the successful candidate may have the opportunity to visit the Earthjustice office nearest them. 

Earthjustice is the premier nonprofit environmental law organization. We take on the biggest, most precedent-setting cases across the country. We wield the power of law and the strength of partnership to protect people’s health; to preserve magnificent places and wildlife; to advance clean energy, and combat climate change. We partner with thousands of groups, supporters, individuals, and communities to engage the critical environmental issues of our time and bring about positive change. We are guided by a passionate, ambitious vision for the future for people and our planet: until justice stands for all, we will never rest. We are here because the earth needs a good lawyer. 

Founded in 1971, Earthjustice has a distinguished track record of achieving significant, lasting environmental protections. We achieve this by hiring people who share a passion for justice and a healthy environment. Our headquarters are in San Francisco with offices in Anchorage, Juneau, Bozeman, Chicago, Denver, Honolulu, Houston, Los Angeles, Miami, Tallahassee, New York, Philadelphia, Seattle, and Washington, DC.

The Northeast Regional Office is dedicated to protecting public health and ensuring a healthy environment for all in the Northeast. We litigate and advocate for a just and equitable transition to clean energy and on behalf of communities disproportionately impacted by environmental harms. 

Earthjustice works with communities and other partners throughout the country to advocate for access to safe and affordable drinking water. Earthjustice’s recent drinking water work has included: filing a lawsuit and other legal advocacy concerning the Trump Administration’s revisions to the Lead and Copper Rule of the Safe Drinking Water Act; and, state advocacy to set limits for drinking water on per and polyfluoroalkyl substances (PFAS), require monitoring of PFAS in industrial discharges, and limit use of PFAS-containing firefighting foam and gear.  

Responsibilities: 

Under the supervision of two attorneys, the extern’s tasks may include: 

  • Conducting legal research and writing to assist in both case development and ongoing active litigation;
  • Developing case strategy and legal theories;
  • Preparing memoranda, briefs, and motions;
  • Meeting with clients and experts;
  • Participating in moots of oral arguments, and
  • Attending court proceedings and conferences with opposing counsel. 

Qualifications: 

  • Currently enrolled in law school and a 2L or 3L.
  • Must be eligible to receive academic credit or fulfill a graduation requirement through this externship.
  • Commitment of at least 12 hours per week for 10-16 weeks for part-time legal externs.
  • Commitment of 37.5 hours per week, for 10-16 weeks if full-time.
  • Excellent writing, research, analytical and organizational skills.
  • Familiarity with legal research tools, including Westlaw.
  • Strong work ethic, initiative, and ability to think creatively.
  • Ability to work collegially with others and independently.
  • Demonstrated interest in environmental protection and environmental justice preferred.
  • Significant knowledge of environmental and administrative law is a plus. 

Compensation: 

Legal externs are unpaid and must receive academic credit or fulfill a graduation requirement for their work with Earthjustice. 

To Apply: 

Interested candidates should submit the following materials by September 11, 2022 via Jobvite. Incomplete applications will not be considered. Applications may be reviewed on a rolling basis. 

  • Resume
  • One-page cover letter that addresses:
    1. Why you want to work with Earthjustice’s Northeast Regional office and whether you would prefer to work specifically on safe drinking water issues,
    2. Whether you are able to receive academic credit or fulfill a graduation requirement for your work with Earthjustice,
    3. The number of hours, or a reasonable estimate, you are available to work per week,
    4. Any information about yourself that is not apparent or fully explained in your resume, and
    5. An indication of any applicable deadlines or requirements that are relevant to your submission or ability to accept an offer.
  • Unofficial law school transcript
  • Writing sample, preferably a legal memorandum less than ten pages that primarily reflects your work
  • List of 2-3 references, including at least one law professor or legal employer 

Please note that this job posting for a legal externship / volunteer opportunity and does NOT cover summer positions; there is a separate application process for applicants interested in summer clerkships with Earthjustice. 

Please reach out to [email protected] if you are having technical difficulties submitting your application. No phone calls, drop-ins, or hard copies. Earthjustice only considers applications submitted for current openings via Jobvite. Unsolicited resumes or resumes for posted positions that are not submitted via Jobvite will not be reviewed or retained. 

Earthjustice is driven by a passion for justice, partnership, and excellence. Our core values lead us to seek a broad range of perspectives and backgrounds to achieve our mission and to maintain an inclusive environment where all staff are valued and respected. As an equal opportunity employer, we are committed to employment practices that ensure that employees and applicants for employment are provided with equal opportunities without regard to race, color, national origin, ancestry, sex, age, religion, physical or mental disability, medical condition, veteran status, marital status, pregnancy, sexual orientation, gender identity, gender expression, genetic information, or any other factor that is not related to the position. 

For positions located within the City and County of San Francisco: Pursuant to the San Francisco Fair Chance Ordinance, we will consider for employment qualified applicants with arrest and conviction records. 

For positions located within the City of Los Angeles: We will consider qualified applicants with criminal histories in a manner consistent with the Los Angeles Fair Chance Initiative for Hiring.

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